~~Ten Oclock in the Morning, Third Day of the Sixth Month, Hundred and Twentieth Year of the Sacred Calendar~~
I had never anticipated the day I had to go into town as part of my job at the mansion.
This was supposed to be the time for the usual magic lessons, but neither young Bright nor Alfred had been able to object to young Ferriss… insistence.
And so I have come to Brunnera to purchase a certain something for her.
Of course, Pochi had stayed behind at the mansion, keeping her eyes peeled for any potential incidents.
As for the two kids, I had asked them to study by themselves by going through the textbooks.
I had originally planned to come out once the afternoon classes were over, but in the end, I had figured that I should just do it now.
Young Brights magic power had already grown to an extraordinary degree.
In just a little over half a month, he had mastered a good majority of elementary-level attack, support, and recovery spells.
Moreover, young Ferris had balanced out her abilities by learning magic other than attack spells over the past two days.
Although she wasnt as fast of a learner as young Bright, she still had a high information absorption rate for children her age.
I had considered that, once prospect mages have mastered a certain percentage of elementary spells, they would hit a wall.
To be specific, physical strength would serve to be a bottleneck in their progress.
It wasnt good for elementary-level mages to possess below-average mobility – no, even average mobility wont do.
I wouldnt want my classes to have a reputation for training mages in that way, at least.
Which brings me to the main point: I had suggested to young Bright that he started learning how to wield a staff.
Having explained to him that this, too, was part of his training to become an excellent wielder of magic.
He had understood my intentions and nodded excitedly.
Thats right – if he were to support his sister, he would need to keep up with her.
Well, June was on the same level as Giorno and Lylia, so the boy would need quite a lot of training to get there, but itd never hurt to beef him up now.
And so I have come into Brunnera to purchase some wooden rods for use as training staves.
Ill have to cover the pointed end with cotton so that theyre safe for children to handle, but these are fast-growing kids.
Theyll be ready to wield the real deal soon enough.
Thinking I could find training swords and rods at weapons shops, I headed to the towns commercial district and proceeded to walk toward one of the decent-looking stores.
But then, upon being called by a particularly hoarse voice, I stopped on my tracks.
“I wouldnt shop there if I were you, man.”
I turned to see a short middle-aged man with a full beard larger than his head.
“Huh, why not”
“I dunno what youre looking for, but that shops just no good.”
“Shouldnt I decide that after going in and seeing for myself”
Lemme tell you what I think about this place though.
Good enough looks, good enough quality, good enough selection, worst prices ever-“
Once he said up to that point, a slender, bespectacled man with swept-back hair leaped right out the store in question.
“Hey, asshole! Ya talkin trash bout my shopgain! Get lost or ya gon get a bucketa hot water on ya face!”
That man, presumably the shopkeeper, shouted at the middle-aged man; his voice leaned more on the feminine side.
“Just laying out the facts here, man.”
The middle-aged man, without fixing his sour look, took a chug from one of his bottles.
Answering to the invitation, I walked in, and was surprised by how true the drunk mans statement was.
They certainly look… good enough.
But the asking prices for most of them were indeed outrageous.
Moreover, there was a warning sign that readno testing stuck in the corner.
Upon closer inspection, I could see that their crafting quality was all over the place, too.
I was no connoisseur, but considering how powerful the monsters of this era were, the selection of weapons here felt quite disappointing.
With that said, though, all I wanted were normal wooden rods.
“So, dear customer, what sorts of weapons are you looking for”
“Oh, some rods for training purposes, please.”
The shopkeeper raised his brows only slightly; thats how a pro works, I guess.
He wasted no time to take me to the training gear section.
It looks like this is the kind of place to choose their customers, too.
I heaved a deep sigh and made my grand gesture of exiting the store.
The shopkeeper didnt come after me; well, he cant blame me for distrusting this place from now on, what with him not caring to try and persuade a leaving customer.
The place doesnt get many repeat visits, Im sure.
Once outside, to my surprise, the middle-aged man from earlier was still in the same spot, chugging from another one of his bottles.
I beamed him a sheepish smile, and he chuckled back at me in good humor.
“Come look at my place.”
And so I followed him, which felt more like chasing a cloud of booze, though.
Another major difference between this era and my time was that both mages and warriors visited weapon shops.
At least from what I had experienced, mages wouldnt be struggling to get their gear from weapon shops back in the future.
The shop was calledMars Weapons. The name referred to some sort of war deity, apparently; quite a bold name choice if so.
The inside was… different.
The smell and characteristic ambiance of the place felt awfully familiar to me.
The displays werent particularly well-organized, but one of the swords caught my eye; its blade was shiny as a mirror and looked so sharp that I felt a chill run down my spine.
Its grip had an easy-to-hold design, and its asking price was perfectly affordable.
All right, now I can say that this guy is awesome.
Hes not just some random drunkard.
“You like what youre seeing”
“Id recommend these to my friends.”
“Appreciate it, man.
Be sure to plug for me when you have the chance, eh Hehehe…”
“But, well… Im not looking for these kinds of weapons today, you see.”
“Well, youre a mage, after all.
But that doesnt mean you dont use these at all, right”
Yes, the same one that I had bought at Regalia and never really had the need to use.
It was more or less hidden behind my mantle, too; hes got good perception.
“Its for self-defense.”
“See, thats why I thought you could be a bit of a picky chooser.
Could tell immediately that youd be out of that rip-off shop soon enough.
So, whatre you looking for”
Depending on how… roughly theyre wielded, I might need to come back for some spares, too.”
“Oh-ho, youre teaching staff martial arts or something”
“Yes, I am.”
“Their age and height”
“A nine-year-old boy, about this tall… and a ten-year-old girl, about this tall.”
After I gave him simple descriptions of how Bright and Ferris were, the man pondered them over for a bit, and then walked to one section of the stores center.
“Then youll want this.”
He handed me a rod; it was apparent that this one had been designed to be easily wielded by children, its handle providing easy grip.
Its quite rare to see this much attention to detail in this era.
My decision was a quick one here; I paid the man with the gold withdrawn from the mansions treasury, and made sure to get the necessary doc.u.ments as proof of the transaction.
“Come again, man.”
This guy makes sure to address me on my way out despite my purchase being relatively minor – hes a good shopkeeper.
I returned to the mansion, handed Alfred the rest of the money, and then headed to the backyard.
There was a teary-eyed Pochi, Ferris straddled on her back, with her ears being pulled as a substitute for reins.
“Owowow, that hurts!”
Young Bright was trying to stop it, of course.
But since he couldnt hope to talk young Ferris down, he only looked on with panic.
“Hey, dont… thrash… around…!”
“It hurts! It hurts! It hurts-!”
Now Pochis getting her b.u.t.t spanked.
Oh, poor doggo.
I mean, I do feel sorry for her, but its too funny, so Ill keep looking for juuuuust a while longer…
“The fruit platter isnt worth this much trouble!”
Oh, I see… so shes fallen for the girls bait.
“Ill let you have it every day for a week, then!”
“Hahaha! Feel free to treat me like a dog!”
Hahaha, very funny, coming from someone whos already a dog!
“Im not a beggar!”
I held my sides to suppress my laughter.
And then, Bright finally noticed that I was here.
Looks like young Ferris has noticed my return now.
At least it seems that shes conscious of her actions around a teacher figure like me.
In a hurry, Pochi, putting on glasses that she had taken out from… somewhere, waved the pointer stick – dont know where she got that from, either – up at the sky.
“A-and those are the fundamental mechanics of embedding magecraft formulas into magic spells!”
Wowwww, she just taught so much in mere seconds! How did she do that, yo!
“H-huh Master Youre back already”
Does this dog have a direct link between her brain and her voice
“W-what…! What spell did you just cast on me, Master!”
Look, Im not in the mood for that joke routine right now, doggo.
“Its the magic that makes you want to eat food, and its called APPETITE!”
“Oh, that makes sense, sir.”
“Now then… you two, here are your training staves!”
I handed one to each Bright and Ferris; the latter immediately swung it down the moment she got it.
Young Bright caught the blow with his rod, his face twitching in reaction to the impact.
Its worth noting that Ferris did as well, however.
“Sounds quite impactful, doesnt it Thats actually very similar to what it sounds like in real combat.”
Both their faces turned serious as they stared down at their numb hands, having felt for the first time what it was like to hold a weapon.
And then young Bright noticed something – a name had been inscribed to his rods grip.
“Hmm, handiwork of… Garm… Kisaragi It feels very good to hold.”